After a two decade long hiatus Qantas will make a comeback to Fiji starting from 31 March 2019 when the Australian carrier will offer a regular connection from Sydney to Nadi again.
I was indeed surprised when I attempted to book a round the world flight a couple years ago and found that it wasn’t possible to book Qantas flights to Nadi which required me to purchase separate tickets on Fiji Airways to reach the destination.
Now general customers and also frequently flyers can rejoice by being able to book tickets and use their miles on the Sydney to Nadi route (vv) again starting 31 March with a narrowbody aircraft.
Here is the connection as filed by Qantas:
Qantas also published a press release announcing their return to the island nation:
Qantas is making it easier for customers to holiday in Fiji by launching new direct flights from Sydney, meeting a growing demand from customers wanting a premium travel option to the islands*.
From 31 March 2019, the direct service will operate four times per week to Nadi, the country’s main gateway, with a Boeing 737 aircraft, offering a checked baggage allowance, inflight entertainment and food and drinks all included as part of the fare, and the option to fly or upgrade to Business class.
The flights add to Jetstar’s direct services which also operate four times per week and will see the Qantas Group offer customers more than 75,000 seats on the route annually and the choice to fly to the popular holiday destination six days a week.
Qantas International CEO Alison Webster said the addition of Fiji to the Qantas network provided more choice for the growing number of Australians wanting to holiday on the islands.
“Fiji continues to be an incredibly popular holiday destination for Australian families, couples and adventure and luxury travellers, with a number of new luxury properties having opened up on the islands in recent years,” said Ms Webster.
“We have built flexibility into our network to respond to growing demand where we see it. In this case, it’s a return to Fiji after almost 20 years, a short four-hour hop from Sydney, helping extend the summer for Australians year-round. …
Qantas will also today add its code to Jetstar’s flights between Sydney and Nadi, for travel from 1 February 2019. Qantas customers travelling on the Jetstar codeshare service will enjoy additional benefits, including the opportunity for Qantas Frequent Flyers to earn points and status credits and a complimentary meal.
Qantas will also continue to codeshare on Fiji Airways’ services to Nadi. With Fiji Airways now integrated as a oneworld connect partner, Qantas customers will benefit from more flight options and the opportunity to earn and redeem Qantas Points and Status Credits on Fiji Airways’ services between the two countries. Eligible Qantas Frequent Flyers will also have access to priority check-in desks, priority boarding and lounge access when flying on Qantas codeshare flights operated by Fiji Airways**.
Codeshares with Jetstar all nice and well but Jetstar is one of my least favorite airlines around and I’d rather fly on Fiji Airways than Jetstar on any given day. The fact that the big carriers try to push passengers onto their own budget airlines is an uncomfortable situation today and many carriers in Europe are doing the same such as Air France/Joon and Lufthansa/Eurowings.
Thankfully Qantas now has mainline flights again even though they’ll be operated by a narrowbody aircraft. This will also make oneWorld flights booked on round the world tickets and awards much easier.
Interesting that Qantas waited this long to go back to Fiji. Did they just discover that there might be some money there? That’s pretty late as Fiji has been in the mainstream for years especially for diving tourists. Hopefully the route will remain over the years and maybe upgraded to a widebody at some point if successful and in high demand.